Questions on/of the Archive

  • Where is the archive? Does the archive rely upon, require, or derive from (with[in]) space? Does, or must, the archive have a place (does it, in fact, take place)? Does the space of the archive produce the archive, or does the archive produce its space?
  • Were the archive to have no [need for] space, would it then constitute a non-place?
  • Is the archive a utopia? Or is it a heterotopia? Is the archive a topos at all, whether figurative or physical?

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  • What is the visual organ(ism) of the archive? What does the archive see, and how does it see?
  • Does the archive most resemble memory, history, or knowledge? Is the archive something wholly or partly other than any of these?
  • Assuming as innately unstable any such relationship between the archive and either memory, history, or knowledge, how is one to comprehend that relationship? Is the archive a technology of vision or is it rather merely a restricted vision of certain technologies of the (self-)analytical or critical kind?
  • Which technologies are given to, or capable of, producing “the archive”?
  • Do such ‘technologies of the archive’ necessarily determine the nature of the archive? Or can the archive in fact construct its mode of production, its techné?
  • Does the archive refer to—must it refer to—a verifiable “reality”? Or is the archive partly or purely speculative? Irrational? Specular? Experimental?
  • If the archive is “invention” (etymologically: finding, discovery), is the aim (the basis, the object) of the archive also then an act of finding? How, if at all, does the archive invent (fashion, figure, fabricate, construct, conjure) what it finds?
  • Must there be an object of, or for, the archive? Can the archive (not) exist independently of its object(s)? Can the archive be the object in itself?